Bloomberg reports that more than half the lobbyists currently working to shape health care reform previously worked in government.
The total number of lobbyists for the pharmaceutical industry, hospitals, insurers, educational groups and other organizations outnumber members of Congress by six to one and of the 2,737 registered lobbyists representing the health care industry, 52 percent have worked for Congress, the White House or federal agencies. That includes, according to Bloomberg, 55 former members of Congress.
According to Bloomberg, lobbyists with past work in government have an easier time getting access to lawmakers:
"It gives them a leg up in terms of being able to talk to people more easily," said Hinchey, a New York Democrat and a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, which supports creating a government-run health plan to compete with private insurers. "Their names are familiar. They've had conversations before with the people they now want to influence."
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